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Tony Charters and Associates Tourforce


Tourism is Your Business

Tony Charters and Associates releases a regular newsletter Tourforce keeping stakeholders of the tourism industry connected with current issues, research, events and funding opportunities.

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Reproduction of any items from Tourforce is welcome, with acknowledgement of the source.

Welcome to Tourforce Edition 18

Grants and Funding
Successful Stage One for Turtle Hospital  

The North Queensland Turtle Hospital campaign ‘Go green for team turtle’ culminated in a community day on Saturday 4 April at Reef HQ Aquarium called Turtle Bonanza.  The day was broadcast live by major media partner 106.3 FM and also supported by media partner Channel 7.

On the day corporate sponsors were heavily involved in the celebrations including Xstrata, Jupiters Townsville Hotel & Casino, the Sea Turtle Foundation, the Department of Environment and Resource Management and Sunferries. 

Another success note on the day was the clean bill of health given to Alva, a Hawksbill turtle, which has been in rehabilitation in a makeshift hospital, and will be released back into the wild shortly. 

The Turtle Hospital has now secured the money required to build Phase One – improved rehabilitation facilities for 4-5 turtles.  Phase One represents a fund raising of $60,000.   Phases 2-4 will require further donations, for enquiries please contact or Ph: +617 4750 0800.

Reef HQ Aquarium are excited about the prospect of having a world class turtle hospital facility which will provide sick and injured marine turtles with an opportunity to grow, reproduce and contribute to a healthy Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Further information:

Victorian Bushfire Tourism Industry Support Package  

The Australian and Victorian Governments have announced a jointly funded $10 million Tourism Industry Support Package.

The package is aimed at getting tourists back to Victoria's regions affected by the bushfires including Victoria's High Country, Gippsland and the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges.

The package will be developed in close consultation with Tourism Victoria, Parks Victoria and tourism operators in response to industry need between March 2009 and June 2011.

Further information:

World Care Fund

Thomson, First Choice and their customers have raised over £2 million through the companies’ joint fundraising scheme, the ‘World Care Fund’.

The money raised is split between ClimateCare and The Travel Foundation, who organise projects benefiting the environment and local communities overseas.

Originally launched in 2007, the World Care Fund gives customers the opportunity to donate £1 per adult and fifty pence per child on an opt-out basis, which is then matched by the company.

Further information:



Geotourism MapGuide

The National Geographic Centre for Sustainable Destinations is teaming up with community leaders, non-profits, and other local stakeholders worldwide to help them promote the Geotourism MapGuide or websites designed by local residents that highlights the natural, historic, and cultural assets unique to a destination.

The aim of the projects is to promote working with residents to preserve their cultural and natural heritage, build community pride and ongoing stewardship.

Further information:


Travel Green Portal

The US Travel Association backed by American Express has developed a web portal for industry and public showcasing initiatives, tools and resources for greening the travel industry.

These include best practice case studies, frameworks and certification programs, government policy, consumer and market research as well as definitions, links, and consumer travel tips.

Further information:







Climate Change
The Icarus Foundation

The Icarus Foundation is a not-for-profit environmental, policy, research and education organisation focused on sustaining a climate friendly tourism industry.

They provide practical information, programs and research that encourage and enable hosts and guests to minimize the greenhouse gases generated by tourism activity.

Further information:




Climate Change Action continues at Ecotourism Australia

Following the success of the Climate Action Certification Program, including 22 certified businesses and 24 new applications in process, Ecotourism Australia is taking an advisory role in Climate Change workshops to assist Australian operators. Workshops are taking place in New South Wales later this month, and Queensland in June.

The upcoming workshops are a part of the Energy Efficiency for Small Business Program which provides independent advice and financial support for businesses to reduce their energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Ecotourism Australia is working with the Department of Environment and Climate Change NSW and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

Further information:

Climate Change and Tourism Report

The World Travel & Tourism Council has launched a new report on measures the travel and tourism industry can take to tackle Climate Change.

The report entitled ‘Leading the Challenge on Climate Change’ represents a collective effort between the Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership, leaders from the travel & tourism industry and experts on Climate Change.

The report is the first phase of an initiative which includes the development of a web portal to promote information on reducing carbon emissions and best practice examples across the world.

Further information:


Product Development
National Surfing Reserve

Newcastle’s Merewether Beach has become one of only five sites in Australia to be declared a National Surfing Reserve.

The reserve stretches for 2kms of spectacular coastline which will be legally protected, providing it with the same status as Bells Beach in Victoria and Angourie, Lennox, Crescent Head and Cronulla Beaches in NSW.

Surfing NSW is also looking to develop a surfing strategy and surfing trail along the east coast.


Further information:

Green Incentive Itineraries Website

Melbourne Convention and Visitors Bureau has launched a "green" incentive itineraries website so planners can make educated choices in their procurement and planning process.

It includes Victoria's top 10 green incentive activities, advice on planning a green business event in Melbourne, and a green checklist for business events.

Further information:


Events and Conferences
Baby Boomers – the Recession Busters?

They invented back-packing and readily identify with adventure, expanding horizons and even a little rebellion. Now the first wave of baby boomers, born just after World War II, is ready to relax, indulge, and enjoy life’s next adventure: retirement. But is the current global crisis going to afford them this luxury?

To a tourism industry in the doldrums, this may be a yawning opportunity.

"Baby boomers are the largest demographic segment in the Australian population, and they control around 50 percent of the country’s wealth. In retirement, they are ready to play, if they can, yet few businesses really understand the baby boomer demographic or how to engage it" said Leigh Kealton, Baby Boomer Tourism Summit Convenor. Leigh recognised the emergence of the adventure travel and backpacking sector in the mid 90’s and initiated the annual international conference to service this sector.

To bridge this gap, and answer these questions, the inaugural Baby Boomer Tourism Summit is being held on ay 25 at the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney.

The summit will examine the latest research showing trends and forecasts for this demographic phenomenon, as well as exploring the moods and motivations of this sector and the triggers for successfully engaging it.

To find out more or view the program, visit

Global Eco Asia-Pacific Tourism Conference 2009

Ecotourism Australia is currently staging the Global Eco Asia-Pacific Tourism Conference for 9-11 November 2009, themed ‘Green Tourism – New Energy, New Business’. The conference is supported by Tourism NT and will be held at the Alice Springs Convention Centre.

Global Eco runs over 3 days with optional field trips being held the weekend prior to the conference. The conference theme features throughout the field trips and conference program and will focus on new enterprise and opportunities in relation to climate change, indigenous business development, alternative energy and consumer buying decisions amongst others, in an Australian and Asia-Pacific context.

The call for papers is now open and Expressions of Interest are currently being sought for presentations on Day 2 of the conference. Day 2 of the conference features 6 Theme Stream Workshops which are developed around:

  1. EcoDesign;
  2. Sustainability and Climate Change;
  3. Indigenous Business Development;
  4. EcoMarketing;
  5. Tourism in Protected Areas; and
  6. Technology

To submit an expression of interest to present a paper please visit  or visit for further information about the conference.

Global Travel & Tourism Summit

The World Travel & Tourism Council is holding the Global Travel & Tourism Summit in Florianopolis, Brazil from 15-16 May, 2009.

Further information:

Australian Regional Tourism Convention

The 2009 Australian Regional Tourism Convention will be held from 31 August to 4 September in Alice Springs.

The convention is held annually at regional areas throughout Australia and was developed as a forum for local, regional and state tourism organisations and enterprises to exchange ideas and develop 'practical solutions' for key regional tourism issues. The program incorporates case studies, forums, open panel sessions and workshops.

Further information:

Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference

The International Ecotourism Society has announced Portland, Oregon as host of the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference from November 2-4, 2009.

The conference will provide opportunities for business leaders, travel and tourism professionals and community members to gain knowledge of the latest trends in ecotourism and sustainable tourism, learn practical skills, and participate in invaluable networking and knowledge sharing.

Further information:

Market Winning Insights

Trends and insights into market leading initiatives in domestic, international and niche marketing will be examined on the Gold Coast in August.

Attendees are provided with extensive opportunities for discussion and interaction with speakers, via facilitated panel discussions.  

This workshop is essential for all tourism marketing practitioners and researchers.

Topics for the day will include consumer research, the latest on tourism branding, marketing and promotion.

The Tourism Futures National Conference is being staged from 17-19 August 2009 at the Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa.

Consumer Research and Market Winning Insights is one of f ive concurrent forums on Monday 17 August including:

Tourism Online - Marketing and Distribution. Engage with international and national marketing, technology and distribution leaders, obtain insights into the latest trends, technology and tools.

Destination Management - Policy and Development. Receive latest updates on innovative and responsive policy development. Every facet of future focused tourism industry is underpinned by

Business Events Tourism. Obtain briefings on successful methods to build the Business Events Tourism market in your destination. Gain insights into future trends in this vital market segment.

Consumer Reseach and Market Winning Insights. Gain information on trends and insights into market leading initiatives in domestic, international and marketing niches.

Sustainability and Climate Change. Public and private protected area tourism, climate change initiatives and best practice sustainability are currently experiencing the greatest focus in the history of tourism.

Visit the conference website for more information at
Tourism Education Course

The Pacific Asia Travel Association has released 'Travel and Tourism: Opening Doors for Your Future' an interactive course on DVD to explains the tourism industry to people about to enter the workforce and for entry-level tourism students.

It can also be used by corporate human resources departments for new recruits.

Further information:

Global Digital Life Study

According to a recent global digital study conducted by market information group TNS, the average Australian spends an hour-and-a-half of their leisure time online each day.

The Digital World, Digital Life study which investigated online behaviour found that while awareness of web in Australia is high with one in two Australians using social networking sites such as Facebook or MySpace the contribution to these mediums is low.

Despite being active online, face-to-face remains the preferred way of communicating with family members, partners and friends. A total of 27,522 people aged 18 to 55 years were interviewed online in 16 countries at the end of 2008.

Further information:

Hospitality Going Green

Ernst & Young has conducted a study on the eco-friendly efforts of hotels and resorts in eight regions of the world.

Results show that 'greening' of the industry is a trend that is here to stay and the concept of sustainability has begun to gain momentum in this sector.

Although researchers saw growth in Earth-friendly attributes and amenities in luxury lodgings, the degree to which such practices were in place for other brackets of travel differed from region to region

Further information:

Boost for Heron Island Research Station

The University of Queensland’s Heron Island Research Station recently had a $9 million refurbishment which included extensive reconstruction of its teaching and research facilities and student accommodation.

The 50 year old station is an internationally renowned facility for coral reef research and student training in marine sciences.

The upgrades also include new laboratories, aquaria and teaching facilities.

Voyages is also introducing a new community partnership initiative called ‘inVolve’ which will allow conference and incentive groups to support the Research Station via financial donations for long-term studies, teaching and research.

Further information:
Ride Local Campaign

Ride Local is an educational campaign geared toward increasing the number of daily commuters choosing alternative transportation. Bicycle commuters in the United States are now eligible to receive US$20 per month tax-free to apply toward bicycle related expenses.

Business owners can also earn tax credits by providing facilities and amenities for employees who ride to work.

The campaign aims to educate employers, their employees and the general population about what can be done to protect the environment and support local economic development by engaging in alternative transportation on a daily basis.

Further information: